For Nicola Wealth Management, it’s always been about growing the pie and sharing it.
The company wasn’t going to let COVID-19 ruin a winning recipe for success, internally or externally. “One thing was absolutely clear right off the bat. We said we’re not reducing any of our charitable contributions,” says Heather Claridge, senior vice president, people and culture.
“For the charities we work with, the need was really high. A lot of them were retrenching because everything was so uncertain.”
Nicola Wealth is headquartered in Vancouver and has offices in Kelowna, Richmond and Toronto. Using an integrated approach to wealth management, it’s grown from modest beginnings to managing $7.4 billion in assets, offering services such as investment, risk management, and tax and estate planning.
The company’s sharing-the-pie culture is so ingrained employees just kept on giving in the communities Nicola Wealth serves, both individually and through company initiatives. Hearing the Greater Vancouver Food Bank was having a tough Thanksgiving, employees raised $100,000 in contributions, which the company matched. A similar campaign raised $100,000 for BC Children’s Hospital.
Nicola Wealth has also been generous with employees. Building on an established benefits package that includes profit sharing and extended health, the company added extra training on resilience during the pandemic, hired a mental health consultant and encouraged teams to keep in constant contact with one another.
Employees were given financial assistance to set up home offices when work shifted to telecommuting in March. Despite the distance and the challenges, it’s brought employees closer together in spirit.
“We’re about generosity, putting people first and creating that family feeling both internally and externally,” says Lawrence Chew, brand and creative manager.
By encouraging “virtual water cooler conversations” and other connectivity, Nicola Wealth has ensured its employees feel the same sense of caring collaboration and innovation as they did pre-pandemic.
“Our surveys show more people are feeling better about their situation now than they did at the end of May, so that tells us we’re on the right track,” says Claridge.
That may be because the adversity presented by the pandemic has only made employees and managers even more driven to keep growing that pie of prosperity together.
“We’re all living in a shared experience right now,” says Chew. “Being able to talk to each other about it and what it means, learning from each other and being able to help each other along the way has been a very big thing.”
This story was produced by Mediacorp in partnership with Postmedia, on behalf of Nicola Wealth Management.